I’m feeling rather legitimized today: none other than Adobe themselves have joined the Readium Foundation. The initial goal of our collaboration is to ensure that any reading system built using the Readium SDK will have the option to include built-in handling for EPUB 2 and EPUB 3 documents protected using Adobe Content Server 4 – the most pervasive form of DRM in the eBook industry.
Now, you all know that I’m personally not convinced of the need for DRM, but even I have to admit that this particular effort will be incredibly useful: the vast majority of eBook publishers and vendors in the world make use of Adobe Content Server and its DRM. So long as that’s the case, any new eReader technology will have a difficult road ahead if it cannot work with those existing tools and ecosystem. Maybe we can wean everyone from DRM in the long term, but we need to get them in the door first, and this is how it happens.
So, we now have Kobo, Sony, and Adobe involved. Two more ‘A’s are left in the wings– I wonder if or when either of those will decide to join in?
You can view the official announcement here.